Photography can turn you into a bird watcher. Just look at me. A few years ago, I didn't even notice all the birds in Florida and I guess you could say, I took them for granted. But now, with trusty camera in hand, I have become quite the birder. My office is filled with bird books and I'm proud to say that I can now identify most common birds and their songs. Birding, for me, is fun and challenging. Working with the light, focusing on small moving flyers means you have to constantly adjust your settings. Going on walks to 'hunt' for birds has kept me in shape and is very relaxing.
One of my favorite places to bird watch is the Birdsong Nature Center in Thomasville, Georgia. The trails are amazing and they have a lovely viewing room where you can watch cardinals (above) and hummingbirds flit and flutter right in front of you. Another wonderful feature is the Listening Place, where you can sit in a screened-in shelter and just listen to all the birds singing around you.
Probably my favorite birds to photograph in Florida are Sandhill Cranes. They walk around our neighborhoods like they own the place (which they do) and are so fun to watch. In the springtime, they bring their chicks into the yard as if to show them off. It is fascinating to watch the chicks follow their parents around, learning how to hunt and to fly.
Brown Pelicans are everywhere along the Florida coast and are also fun to 'shoot'. Visit any fishing pier and you will find them graciously posing. They will entertain you with constant fly-bys, dips in the water and forever preening sessions. They are quite the showoffs.
My favorite bird identifying book is Smithsonian Handbooks Birds of North America.
To see all of my bird photos on Fine Art America: BIRDS
To see other amazing bird photos on FAA: BIRDS - HUMMINGBIRDS - BROWN PELICANS - PELICANS - SANDHILL CRANES